Most Christians agree tithing is important, but according to the research, most Christians don’t do it. According to one study, Christians today actually give less per capita than they did during the Great Depression. At best, only 25 percent of churchgoers tithe, but typically only 3-5 percent tithe regularly. There could be many reasons for this — the desire to know how the tithe affects them as a member, inconsistent attendance, or simply a lack of understanding about the biblical principle of giving — but the reasons why we are called to tithe are even more important.
First, we are called to tithe because it is an act of worship. All God gives us financially is His. We are merely stewards. We give back to our church body and give it as an offering — a symbol of our thankfulness and love for God.
We tithe because it is a spiritual discipline that teaches us how to live generously. When we live openhandedly, unselfishly, we become more like Christ. It can be difficult, but it teaches us to die to ourselves — to sacrifice something we may want in order to honor God first. To show thankfulness for all we have before we spend his blessings on material things. Giving ten percent of our income also helps us to cultivate trust in God for provision.
Additionally, tithing provides resources for God to use for good deeds through the church. By tithing, we have the blessing of being a small part of something greater than ourselves that can reach even more people for Christ than perhaps we could on our own. By contributing to what the church is doing in the community and within the church body, we are using what God has given us to serve others.
If we focus our attention on the reasons why God asks us to tithe, it can greatly reduce the hesitation we feel when we submit that donation or write that check each month. We give not because we have to, but because God first gave to us, and we do so with a joyful heart and generous spirit. Doing so ends up benefitting us far more than it costs us.